When rice is bought in bulk or in sacks, it must be picked and cleaned of small pieces of stones and other foreign particles.
- To wash rice, put it in a large bowl with plenty of cold water.
- Run fingers through the grains gently, then tip the bowl and pour off most of the milky water.
- Repeat this until the water is clear.
- Soak basmati rice in cold water for 30 minutes.
- Soak other kinds of long-grain or short-grain rice in hot water mixed with salt (½ tablespoon to 1 quart water) for at least 1 hour.
- Drain 20 minutes.